The Gift of Matter (Body)
When we speak of things in the natural world, we are really speaking about energy expressing itself in various forms– energy flowing in combined patterns that take form, occupy space and are organized and functional. Some things have an obvious beginning and end while others do not. Some seem distinct and set apart, holding an obvious shape of their own. Others are less distinct, and it is less clear what level of containment is present. Still, things are often held together as themselves in a body.
What special magic is it that draws this energy together to cooperate and take on organized form? While typing this sentence, I sit here in an oak chair at an oak table in a kitchen in Colorado. However, to clarify, I am just sitting on a swarming collection of subatomic particles in the shape of a chair, pushed up against another swarm of particles in the shape of a table. Let us not forget my body. It may have a different consistency and behavior than table and chair, yet my body too is made solely of particles of energy. It is all energy. One might look at me and believe that there is a man sitting at a table, but we have simply trained ourselves to see it as such.
I am willing to buy into this story so long as my chair continues to behave like a chair and my body behaves like a human body. Because we understand the wooden chair to be made of pure energy, it seems we could simply pass our hand through it. However, it is quite sturdy and somewhat resistant to outside forces. Still, it can be penetrated or destroyed. I could drive a nail into it or toss it on a fire. I could break it into a bunch of pieces.
The word "matter" has its roots in "mater" (mother). You might use the word "matter" in a sentence like "Yes, this matters much to me." Again, we are examining a key word for the value it will have as we explore the fundamental trinity and how the three primal gifts of the one whole work together. We will begin with the use of the word "matter" that we've just touched upon, and that is caring. Matter is not so much about any physical nature of a thing, but for how energy is held together in any form. What holds everything together (shock of all shocks) is the fact that it matters to the creator. The same way something matters to me, it matters to consciousness. Matter is the bond of relationship between patterns of energy. There is an understanding between subatomic particles that allows them to hold together and live as a chair. The chair doesn't appear to know itself as a chair, but the chair's creator knew its purpose and identity well. The difference lies in the creative force and intelligence that put it together, what continues to hold it together, and where that creative intelligence lives.
I identify with my body and exercise my will in relation to my body. This is a significant difference between the chair and myself. You can break the chair down into chunks of wood and the subatomic relationships would remain basically the same. The chair would simply go on "living" as chunks of wood. My body would not manage so well when broken into parts. Here we have the opportunity to point out the difference between that which is organic and that which is not. The chair was once a tree and lived an organic life. It interacted with its environment. My body, for the most part, still lives an organic life. My body can grow and change through this ongoing interaction, steered by an active intelligence.
I grow and change because it continues to matter to me. It also matters to the tree. It matters to fish, sand, stars, and oceans. It matters. The mater is the mother and that mother is Mother Nature. Mother Nature is the greatest of all matters. Those forms made inorganic by having their ability to interact modified, are no longer as capable (if at all) of this kind of behavior.
There is another word for this mattering or building relationships between behaving entities of all levels of nature, and that is love. It binds us together and offers a form of fulfillment. It is love that matters. We experience resistance when being parted from our loved ones. This same "wanting to stay together" is active in all bonds of organic life. It is a biological organization of energy that not only lives, but actively loves its life. We may not see a tree being a tree and recognize the love that is present in all its parts, sustaining it as a thing, but it is there. All energy is the energy of love, though it may seem like something else altogether.
Nature lives and heals through its mattering. We should never underestimate the power of love in its ability to heal. It is the bonding principle in all of nature. Nature is the way that a thing behaves. Human nature is the way that humans behave. Nature is the interplay between consciousness, spirit and matter. Consciousness is awareness experiencing, spirit is the infinite resource of energy, and matter is the form the energy takes depending on what is mattering to consciousness.
Once again, the point of becoming more acquainted with the ongoing process between the three primal gifts (or capacities) of the whole, is to be able to recognize this process and participate in it with full awareness. This participation represents our opportunity to see where we may be holding back, redirecting, interfering with or otherwise distorting natural patterns of energy that might be the cause of imbalances in our lives. By discovering these and letting go of our habits of limiting or overcompensating energetically, we can restore the integrity and therefore our health.
It's essential that we understand the interplay between our witnessing, thinking and imagining (consciousness), our vitality, inspiration, responsiveness and willingness (energy), and finally our ability to recognize what we care about, seek to perpetuate, feel strongly toward, and what we sense to be right (matter). Together, this creates our circumstances, both internally and externally.